December 19, 2009
Are You The Coaching Authority In Your Niche?
Regardless of the coaching niche that you have chosen, you have competition. If you don't have any competitors, I would seriously reconsider your niche! Remember that competition means that your niche is viable. People are paying for coaching in that niche.
So as this is the case — and the number of coaching programs, certifications, and schools increases, and you will now have even more coaches starting their practices and vying for your coaching clients. It's more important than ever that you become the coaching authority a.k.a. the "go to" coach in your niche.
Are you that go to coach?
If your answer is a definitive no or a not yet, then a tried and true, tested method of narrowing the gap between you and the leaders in your marketplace is by positioning yourself as an authority through educational and entertaining content: writing articles a.k.a. article marketing.
It seems like a pretty simple idea, yet I watch year after year how coaches fail to build a self-sustaining practice because they tend to many other parts of their business except for "positioning" themselves as leaders in their niches.
This is a big mistake that many coaches make due to a variety of reasons. One being that many coaches, especially new coaches, are not confident enough to allow themselves to even be thought of as an expert on anything. I work with coaches like this all the time. Even with job experience, coaching certification, and clients — many coaches do not view themselves as an expert on their topic and therefore cannot take the steps to position themselves as such. This is a BIG mistake. If you have specialized knowledge on any topic that people are willing to pay money to learn - then you are an expert. Learn how to communicate that specialized knowledge effectively, and you are an authority.
Another reason why some coaches do not know how to position themselves effectively in their marketplaces, is due to the fact that they did not learn very good marketing techniques in coaching certification programs. I know that my schools didn't do a very good job of this. So you are kind of out there all on your own, wishing on a wing and a prayer, that you can find enough clients to sustain a self-supporting practice. When in fact, clients should come to you.
That's where writing articles and becoming THE "go to" coaching authority in your niche steps in. Here's how to do it in three simple steps…
1. Examine your competition. Don't be afraid to look and determine who the leaders, who the power players are in your niche, and examine what they are doing. What are they talking about in their articles, on their sites, in forums or on social networking sites. For example, if your competitor is on Twitter, what do folks talk to him about? What questions do they ask? What problems do they need solved?
2. Build your content. Now that you know what the "buzz" is in your niche, it's time to start writing articles and writing more articles on those topics. Really get out there and cover the basic points, plus the "buzz" topics in your niche. This will work powerfully because as people search for answers in this niche on the web, your content will start to surface in the search engine results. The more you write, and the more visible you become, the more potential clients will start to realize that "Wow, this coach must know what he/she is talking about. I see his/her stuff everywhere. Maybe I should try his/her program."
3. Promote your content. Yes, sometimes if you build it - they will come. But they will come a LOT faster if you promote your articles. Get on Twitter, Facebook, and some of the other social marketing and bookmarking sites and tell people what you've written and why they need to read it. Send a blast to your opt-in list about your new articles. Make it REAL easy for potential clients to access your information. I like to join all the popular social marketing sites out there and then sent a "blast" about my articles to all of them at the same time. I hit all my communities this way with one simple message. I use a free service over at Ping.fm to do this.
Lisa Angelettie is a professional coach, published author, and article marketing expert. She's been using articles exclusively since 2003 to drive traffic to the websites of her clients as well as her own. Lisa is the Article Marketing Expert for Group Mastery. Stop by and read some of Lisa's free article marketing tips over at her site: http://LisaAngelettie.com